Entries in visual (314)
The Polar Clock, from Pixel Breaker, version 3 is now out as a screen saver for Mac and Windows. It's also available as a Mac OS X Widget.
I don't know why, but I love this clock. I'm mesmerized watching the seconds going around. With a little practice, you can visualize the time. I won't say this is the best way to visualize the time, but it's definitely fascinating.
Last year I was in Shanghai, China on business. A friend suggested we visit the Shanghai Urban Planning building, and the first thing I thought was "ohhh, I bet that's exciting...not". But, he convinced us to give it a try, and here are a few photos I took.
On the top floor of this building is the largest model of urban planning in the world. For an American, seeing Shanghai is a shock at how large the city is, and how many skyscrapers there are. For reference, Shanghai's population is about 22 million people, compared to about 8 million in New York. Most U.S. cities have a "downtown" type area where the most skyscrapers are clustered, but Shanghai is a city of skyscrapers everywhere.
The World Population Map is one way to understand the scale difference between the U.S. and China, but this model city is astounding. Even better than riding around town (you definitely don't want to be the one driving), the model city really drives home the scale of Shanghai, and what has been accomplished in urban development. The model is built at 1:2000 scale.
"The map, based on data from the American, British and Iraqi governments and from news reports, shows the dates, locations and circumstances of deaths."The number has doubled since they did this for January 2006 which had around 800 deaths. Each figure represents an individual of the American forces, coalition forces, Iraqi forces, police officers or civilian death. The larger figures have numbers showing how many people they represent (which I think diminishes the visual impact). A smaller icon shows the cause of death. All the figures are connected to a location in the country.
I would have added some color coding too, but I'm guessing the NY Times had to keep it in black & white to print it in the newspaper.
My wife got the biggest laugh out of these. Found on Information Aesthetics, these double bed sheets are printed with a ruler starting at the center and measuring outward. You can always tell whose side you're on because the ruler is printed to be read when you are in the bed.
The sheets are from DesignWise, a store chain with designer products in Portugal, Spain and France. DESIGNWISE is a brand that edits original products and objects created by Portuguese designers.
Three design firms took on the challenge of re-designing the Bloomberg terminal interface, and the results were fantastic. The challenge came from Portfolio.com. The original article is here, but the fantasy terminals are here with an interactive interface that lets you highlight and zoom in on particular features. The design above is from thehappycorp.com and is my personal favorite.
Bloomberg claims to be constantly improving their interface design, but it still looks like runs on DOS and is straight out of the 80's.
Here is the desing from IDEO.com:
And one from Ziba.com:
You can read his full description here, but the point is the use of images in the chart so you can visualize the relationship between separate pieces of information. Phasers represent fights in each episode, Kirk's photo represents affairs during the episode with Captain Kirk and the colored shirts show fatalities of an actor in that colored shirt in that particular episode. Proving once and for all that being a red-shirted ensign is a hazardous job on the Enterprise.
Chris Jordan has created some fantastic photographic artwork depicting the massive scale of some statistics about American life. This is where infographics actually become artwork.
The image above "Depicts nine million wooden ABC blocks, equal to the number of American children with no health insurance coverage in 2007." The complete image is 16 feet tall x 32 feet wide.
There are 17 different images available to view on his website. You can see the images magnified there to show the small pieces that each image is made from. Each image is based on an actual statistic about American life.
FYI: This series will be exhibited at the Paul Kopeikin Gallery in Los Angeles, opening Sep 8. More info at www.paulkopeikingallery.com.
Found on arstechnica.com, this one has me really excited. I have been disappointed for at least two decades that real HUDs (Heads-Up Displays) have not become standard, or even available as a third party product for our cars. Now a US patent application from Microsoft has been published showing a possible future HUD for your car.
More than just your speed, with today's technology we should have things like incoming caller-id, compass direction, outside temperature, current playing music title, live GPS map and distance to the car in front of us showing around the edges of our windshields.
We can only cross our fingers and hope that this would some day become a reality.